27/07/2015 – EAPN has released its briefing on Juncker’s EU Investment Plan and the European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI). As a consequence of the economic crisis, the level of investment in the EU has dropped significantly since its peak in 2007, by about 15%. The former Barroso Commission had been characterized by the austerity era, where fiscal consolidation has been over prioritized at the expense of investments, including social investment. Although the current Juncker Commission is composed by the same political coalition, the urgency of a response in terms of investment to the consequences of the economic and financial crisis seems to have become more prominent.
Indeed, the shift towards investment has been one of the top priorities of Jean-Claude Juncker since his first speech in the European Parliament, when he presented the political guidelines of his mandate: “My first priority as Commission President will be to strengthen Europe’s competitiveness and to stimulate investment for the purpose of job creation.” Against this backdrop, the European Commission on 26/11/2014 issued COM(2014) 903, where the guidelines and the operational framework of the Investment Plan for Europe are presented. However, this investment priority, is strongly balanced with a continued focus on reducing debt and deficit, and restructuring (labour markets and modernising social protection).
EAPN’s briefing on Juncker’s EU Investment Plan and the European Fund for Strategic Investment (EFSI)was drafted by Antonino Sorrenti, intern with EAPN with the support of Sian Jones, EAPN Policy Coordinator and Amana Ferro, Senior Policy Officer.